A Christmas message from the Bushfire CRC

Created date

Friday, December 17, 2010 - 2:40am

This year the Bushfire CRC was in the unique position of having the completion of one suite of research projects overlapping with the beginning of another - while the momentum was building for a more longer-term, broader-based research agenda. 

Meanwhile, the general business of this research centre kept on producing tangible outputs for the industry. And a calendar of events promoted the research - including a refreshingly different conference in Darwin in September and an intensive week of ideas sharing with our US colleagues in June.

Cleary, the past year was one of enormous challenge and transition for the bushfire research community.

The completion of the initial seven year research program was a significant milestone. This was the collection of research projects that the Bushfire CRC began with much promise back in 2003. By end of June this year we had substantially delivered on that promise with most projects achieving, and in some cases overachieving, on their early aims.

The 2009 Victorian Bushfires Royal Commission provided a considerable degree of workload over the year, not only for the Bushfire CRC but for all our member organisations. The final report presents the Bushfire CRC with a range of challenges to ensure that the targeted new research program of the next few years delivers on the intent of the Royal Commissioners to make Australians better able to live with the threat of fire.

It was a credit to all our researchers and supporting partners that the Royal Commissioners officially noted their appreciation of the Bushfire CRC and recommended an ongoing national bushfire research centre. Shortly after, an Australian Senate Select Committee report into bushfires made essentially the same finding. This approach was endorsed by six Victorian universities – each of which co-signed a letter of support to the Victorian Premier that the Bushfire CRC should transition to a national collaborative research body for bushfires. With all this support now in place, I am confident we will make great gains in 2011 in making this a reality.

On behalf of the Board and the staff at the Bushfire CRC office, a big thank you to all those in the wider Bushfire CRC community for the efforts you have put in over the past year.

My very best wishes to you and your family for a Happy Christmas and a safe and successful New Year.